FYF + CFAER Present:
Emily Reo, Monster Rally
2225 Colorado Blvd
Los Angeles, CA, 90041
Mutual Benefit have said, "We set off to make a nautical funeral of sorts or perhaps a celebration of all things eventually turning into sand," and indeed their music evokes a gradual geological procession through the lens of sentimental and pensive human observation. Steadfastly droney with the bellows of harmonicas and accordians in tow, their lingering sound is endlessly enchanting.
The past couple of years have conditioned us to expect a song called "Coast" to do a number of things that could be described with some variant of "wavy." That isn't totally unwarranted on the lead single from Emily Reo's debut Olive Juice. Beyond its lyrical tether to the word "seaside" and affiliation with Floridian label Elestial Sound, "Coast" is a hi-fi rendering of the kind of lo-fi, hypnagogic home-recording techniques that have become de rigeur as most singer-songwriters take on the additional role of producer: loops on top of loops, abstract self-harmonizing, vintage synth lines, brittle drum machines.
But "Coast" is also something distinct. From the very beginning, Reo sounds swept off her feet, gliding effortlessly from one melody to the next and for nearly eight mesmerizing minutes, synths ebb out of the mix only to return later and a light disco beat sprawls out towards the horizon. It's a leisurely and lovely synth-pop sunset.
Monster Rally is the brainchild of 23 year old Columbus (Ohio) resident and Cleveland native Ted Feighan. Producing music that is sampled-based tropical pop, Monster Rally began with the goal of assembling a bunch of old records into a completely different beast. Feighan began crafting tracks from his collection of records, combining his interests in Hip-hop, Exotica, Tropicalia, and Soul. Monster Rally creates tracks that manage to maintain a surprisingly organic sound, as if they were recorded by a full band on analog tape. There is something inherently nostalgic about the sound.